Cerezo ready for steamy ACL showdown with Buriram

Kyodo

Cerezo Osaka ran through final preparations Monday on the eve of their Asian Champions League clash away to Thai side Buriram United.

With hot and humid weather forecast for matchday, the visitors will need to maintain their focus to win, manager Yoon Jong-hwan said.

“We have to concentrate. If we can keep our defense and attack on the same page, we can get the result,” he said.

Cerezo sit atop Group G on four points, having drawn 0-0 with China’s Guangzhou Evergrande after opening the tournament with a 1-0 victory over Jeju United of South Korea.

Thai domestic league leader Buriram is looking to climb from the bottom of the group and bounce back from a 2-0 loss to Jeju in its most recent ACL fixture.

Cerezo defensive midfielder Daichi Akiyama said on-field communication would be critical for his team, which is likely to feature several lineup changes from the side that drew 3-3 last Friday with Consadole Sapporo in the J. League.

“We need to use our voices so that everyone knows where they’re supposed to move (on the field),” he said.

In other ACL action Tuesday night, Kashiwa Reysol will host reigning Hong Kong Premier League champion Kitchee. Reysol are still looking for a first win in Group E, with their sole point coming from their opening 1-1 draw with China’s Tianjin Quanjian.